Unions Find Members Slow to Rally Behind Democrats

September 18, 2010 13:41

The Democrats will depend on labor unions — the shock troops of their political campaigns — to offset two new developments this election cycle: Tea Party enthusiasm and corporations’ ability to spend unlimited amounts thanks to a Supreme Court ruling. – NY Times

By STEVEN GREENHOUSE at The New York Times


‘A.F.L.-C.I.O. leaders say that they will spend around $50 million on races in 26 states and that unions already have 1,500 full-time campaign workers on the ground. The service employees have budgeted $44 million for the election, while other unions will spend tens of millions of dollars more. All told, labor strategists say their ground troops will make more than 10 million phone calls to members’ homes, distribute millions of fliers at workplaces and knock on millions of doors.’

‘Labor leaders, once frustrated themselves about Mr. Obama and Congressional Democrats, have warmed to them recently after they enacted a $23 billion package to save the jobs of teachers, police and firefighters and after the president proposed a $50 billion infrastructure plan.’

‘“The union leadership is wedded to the Democratic Party. But what we’ve seen cycle after cycle is the membership demonstrates real independence and votes independently of the union bosses.”’


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